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The Mother of All Meltdowns Brought Us Together #AskAwayFriday

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Disclosure: Please note that A Dish of Daily Life uses an Amazon referral link for The Mother of All Meltdowns. If you purchase our book using my link, your price will not change.  

Once again, it’s time for #AskAwayFriday and my partner this week is Melissa from Home on Deranged! Melissa is also one of the co-authors of The Mother of All Meltdowns, and I finally got to meet her in person at Bloggy Boot Camp in Dallas, along with Jen from PinkWhen (another co-author)! We’re having some fun checking out the LG Appliances…I have a new washer and dryer on my wish list!

Bloggy Boot Camp in Dallas

Melissa is the mom to two adorable little girls, and has been writing a very long time! She actually used to be a reporter and newspaper editor, which was what I wanted to be when I grew up, way back when. Of course, it’s not what I went to college for, nor what I ended up doing, but it was my dream in high school.

Home on Deranged

Apparently we are both “last minute Lucy’s” because neither one of got our questions done for each other until Thursday. But we’re rolling with it anyway. Check over at Home on Deranged to see what I asked Melissa…but first, here is what she asked me!

1. You’ve been married for 20+ years. What advice would you give newlyweds? Get your sleep now, before you have kids? Haha I’m not sure I’m the best person to dispense any advice on marriage, but I guess I would say don’t try to change your spouse…love them for who they are.


2. I want to improve the pictures on my blog. Give me your best tip. Most people don’t like my best tip…but…use your camera manual! I refer back to mine all the time…it is a wealth of information! If you’ve lost it, go download another off of the internet. Yes, I did that, and I had it bound at Staples. I love sports photography, but I know you have young kids, and young kids are kind of like sports photography in that they are a moving target, so I’m going to say set your camera to continuous shooting so you don’t miss anything. You can always delete the shots you don’t need. I’d also suggest getting down on their level when you can, and avoid using the flash, and use natural light as much as possible. I’ll actually be posting something on using natural light shortly!


3. You went to college in Colorado. How did you bring yourself to leave??? Er, what I meant to say is – do you miss Colorado? I miss the Colorado winters. Their winters are the best kept secret…freezing cold and snowy one day, 70’s the next! I miss my college roommates, who I am still close to. They are the closest things I have to sisters…none of us have sisters. And one of them I have known since I was 11 years old! The decision to leave…well…I followed my then boyfriend East. He is from Connecticut and graduated ahead of me. So he had already gone back East and was working, while we were still dating. I told him the only way I was moving there (away from everyone and everything I knew) was if I got a ring. So we got married early in life, but obviously it worked out for the best, because we will be celebrating 22 years this summer!

4. You have sons and a daughter. Through our True Tales series, we examine the differences. Do you find it to be different, raising boys and a girl? Huge differences!! But not what you’d think. My boys are easier in a lot of ways now, but they weren’t when they were little. It kind of swapped. When they were little they pulled all sorts of ridiculous pranks! Now that they are teenagers (well, my last one is almost a teen), they are the easier ones. Give them their sports or their video games, or anything to do with computers, and they’re happy. Our daughter is much more focused and driven about everything…school, sports, even thinking about college and what she needs to get on her resume now. My oldest is just taking his time on the whole college thing and he’s a junior!!

5. As a social media marketer, which one program do you find to be the can’t-do-without one? Well, I think Google+ and Pinterest are going to be big drivers going forward, but I do love Twitter!! It’s a bit addicting.

6. As a fellow author of The Mother of All Meltdowns, tell me about your writing process for your chapter. Since my kids are older, I wanted to really be sure I picked something that wouldn’t be embarrassing to them…and could only be potentially embarrassing to me. When I thought back to my “meltdown” moments, the one that stood out in my mind the most was during the most difficult time period in my life, when my youngest son was very sick and the doctors could not figure out why. Every time he stopped breathing, I thought that was it…I was going to lose him. I was a complete mess. It was the perfect storm for a meltdown. If you’ve ever had one of those mom moments that you could just do over (and most of us have), you definitely won’t feel like you’re alone after reading our book (shameless plug).

The Mother of All Meltdowns button

7. What is the worst job you’ve ever had? I’ve pretty much always worked for small privately held businesses. One of them had an owner that just micro managed everything, and I do not work well with someone looking over my shoulder all the time. I am a “run with it” gal. I’m a self starter and can make things happen, but not when I have to get approval for every little thing and wait two days for that approval to happen before I can move on.

8. If you had a free afternoon, would you rather: read a book, watch a movie, take a bike ride, or sleep? I’d probably watch a movie, because I hardly ever see movies…unless you count the sports movies that I am addicted to and have watched over and over again, like Miracle and Remember the Titans and Coach Carter.

9. If money is no object, would you rather have a new kitchen or a new bathroom? I love my kitchen. When I was pregnant with my youngest, we added on to our house and put in our dream kitchen.  It’s my favorite room in the house, and the hangout spot (besides the pool area) when people are over. So I am going to go with a new bathroom. Specifically, a re-do of the boys’ bathroom would be nice. It’s a laundry room/bathroom and it needs major work! I will gladly share a picture of our kitchen but definitely not the boys’ bathroom!


10. You’ve admitted having some crazy travel adventures. Tell me a funny story. I know I told a couple of these stories in Not So Proud (but kind of funny) Parenting Moments. This one I’m thinking of is a little different. A few years back my daughter had the opportunity to play soccer at an international tournament in Sweden. Just she and I went, and it was a phenomenal trip! On the night of opening ceremonies, when we were leaving, there was a group of young men standing outside checking out all the girls, and one of them had a sign that said “Free Kiss.” So one of the jokester dads that was with the group went over to the kid and said something to the effect of “ok, I’m waiting.” And the very confused kid said something like “for what?” Of course when the dad replied that he was waiting for his kiss, the kid was horrified! The look on his face was just priceless, and we all had a good laugh.

If you would like to join in the fun with #AskAwayFriday, head over to visit Penny from The Real Housewife of Caroline County or Amber from The Bold Fab Mom. These ladies came up with this concept as a chance for bloggers to connect and learn more about each other, and you can check out who is linking up on either of their blogs.


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Catherine Gacad

Monday 27th of January 2014

that is the funniest story about the kiss! i wish i'd witnessed that. i also love how you told your future husband you weren't moving without a ring. you go girl!


Monday 27th of January 2014

oh my I want your kitchen! I really do enjoy reading the posts in this series. love seeing the deeper you!


Monday 27th of January 2014

Your kitchen is beautiful! I like mine pretty well now too, I just wish I had a real pantry. That is awesome your daughter got to play at a tournament in Sweden. My great grandparents were born there, so I have always wanted to go.


Monday 27th of January 2014

Beautiful beautiful kitchen!! I am hoping to completely redo mine this summer. We can do it this winter but who wants to be without a stove for 3 weeks in the winter?! I'd rather at least have access to a grill :) Love that picture of you and hubby and maybe I need to visit Colorado in the winter--or even in the summer. I'd go anywhere for 70 degrees right now!


Monday 27th of January 2014

Ok a- YES to the manual, I took a short class in manual use of my camera and it was brilliant/freedom. b- I love Home on Deranged, too. I am so jealous you all got to be in a book together (I admit it...that was one awesome book). c- I loved your essay in that book, so glad you opened up and shared that, I had no idea. Hope to see you again soon, friend!